What am I doing with this blog?

I came to this website today to find one of my favorite recipes: Orange Zucchini Bread,  This is probably one of the best Zucchini breads I’ve ever made and I’m so glad I saved the recipe here because I’m not sure exactly how I found it in the first place.  As I was navigating the site (which I need to make easier to navigate) I became really sad as I realized the mindset I was in when I started compiling these menus and recipes.

I was desperately trying to lose weight because I was told my weight was causing me to lose my vision.  There’s an actual diagnosis for what was going on, which I won’t put here.  So I invested a lot of money in a weight loss company and experienced some great results and I created this website to track my recipes, document my favorite modifications and versions, etc.  I want to clarify I’m not much of a real cook and I certainly don’t create my own recipes – I just wanted to place to store my ideas so I could come back to them again.

Several years later I’m at a way different place in my life.  I’ve learned all about the pitfalls and manipulation in diet culture.  I’m learning to love who I am and strive for health, not some unattainable number on the scale.  I’ve learned that the reason popular weight loss companies thrive is because THEY DON’T WORK – and they have repeat customers.  They have a lot of job security in a society driven by body insecurity.

I think there have been some great strides to improve body image and acceptance in recent years, but we have a long ways to go.  For me – this means starting with me.  I’m going to work to totally revamp and change my website to remove all suggestion of any diet plan.  Let’s face it – some of these recipes suck!  I’m going to delete the crummy ones.  Finally – I’m going to start sharing things that I find, learn from, and enjoy about body positivity and delicious things to eat.  Eventually I’ll connect this to my social media and put it all together in a diet-free, body positive package.

But first – I need to make some Orange Zuchhini Bread.  I can’t wait to enjoy it!

November 15-21

Monday, November 16 – Chicken Enchiladas, Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice

Tuesday, November 17 – Fettuccine Alfredo, Grilled Chicken and Broccoli

Wednesday, November 18 – Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Chili, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Friday, November 20 – Crock Pot Sesame Honey Chicken with cauliflower rice

Saturday, November 21 – Meat Loaf, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans

Extra – I need to make a GF Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting (w/ half the sugar) on Saturday!

Planning ahead:



November 9-14

Monday, November 9 – Shrimp and Asparagus Pesto Tortellini

Wednesday, November 11 – Taco Bravos

Thursday, November 12 – Pork Chops and Steamed Brocolli, Mashed Potatoes

Friday, November 13 – Dry Poached Chicken, Steamed Green Beans, Roasted Sweet Potatoes (HALF)

Saturday, November 14 – Take Out PIZZA!

Monday, November 16 – http://www.skinnytaste.com/2010/02/chicken-enchiladas.html?m=1


November 1-7

Tuesday – Blissful Butternut Squash Soup (already cooked)
Paninis: Cheese – havarti and horseradish sharp cheddar, Deli meat – rotisseried turkey, Fresh Bread

Thursday – Baked Spaghetti Squash and Cheese (scale recipe for leftover spaghetti squash)
Pan-cooked Chicken (pre-seasoned from the grocery store)
Steamed Green Beans

Friday – Manwich on Kings Hawaiian Rolls
Roasted Potato Wedges
Steamed Brocolli

Roasted Seasoned Winter Squash Medley

Roasted Seasoned Winter Squash Medley
adapted from: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2015/10/roasted-seasoned-winter-squash-medley.html

Serves 4

1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tsp brown sugar
2 lbs mixed winter squash (butternut, kabocha, etc.), peeled and cut into 3/4 –inch cubes
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine the onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, cayenne, salt and brown sugar.
In a large mixing bowl, toss squash with butter and olive oil. Add 1 tablespoon of the spice mixture to the bowl and toss well to coat. Place squash on a sheet pan lined with parchment and bake for 40-45 minutes, tossing every 15 minutes, to allow for even browning. Sprinkle with 1 1/2 teaspoons more of spice mixture. Toss gently to coat and serve hot.

The first 5 ingredients would be an excellent spice mix for other items such as pork chops, sweet potatoes, soups and stews.  I eliminated the salt from the original recipe – but if you feel like the mix needs it, add 1/2 tsp. kosher salt.

October 25-31, 2015 – What’s cooking?

Monday 10/26Spaghetti Squash Lasagna (add ground beef) with Garlic Bread
(Prep: make the entire recipe ahead of time)

Tuesday 10/27Dry Poached Chicken
Roasted Seasoned Winter Squash Medley
Steamed Green Beans
(Prep: chop squash, thaw chicken)

Thursday 10/29 – Steak Fajitas (with tortillas, cheddar cheese and sour cream)
(Prep: slice steak strips, slice two green peppers and one onions)

Friday 10/30Shrimp Stir-Fry with Broccoli
(Prep: chop broccoli, red onion, and carrots)

Saturday  10/31 – Happy Halloween!  Dinner with friends – I think I’ll bring Caramel Apple Cheesecake!

Pork Chops with Dijon Cream

Adapted from: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/pork-chops-with-dijon-cream-sauce

2 (4-6 ounce) boneless center-cut pork loin chops (1/2 inch thick)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
Cooking spray
1/3 cup fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/3 cup fat-free half-and-half or fat-free evaporated milk

Trim fat from chops. Sprinkle both sides of chops evenly with salt and pepper. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; place over medium-high heat until hot. Add chops to skillet, and cook 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove chops from skillet, and keep warm.
Add broth to skillet, stirring to loosen browned bits. Combine mustard and half-and-half; add to skillet. Reduce heat, and simmer 7 minutes or until sauce is thickened slightly. Spoon sauce over chops.

Bourbon-Glazed Salmon

Adapted from: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/bourbon-glazed-salmon-0

1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons bourbon
1 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1/2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 (4-6 ounce) skinless salmon fillets
Cooking spray
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
sesame seeds, toasted

Combine first 7 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add fish to bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator 1 1/2 hours, turning occasionally.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add fish and marinade to pan; cook fish 4 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Place 1 fillet on each of 2 plates; drizzle each serving with about 2 teaspoons sauce. Sprinkle each serving with green onions and 3/4 teaspoon sesame seeds.

Apricot Glazed Ham Steaks

Adapted from: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/apricot-glazed-ham-steaks

Ham Steaks – for two servings (8-12 oz)
Cooking spray
1/4 cup apricot spreadable fruit
1/4 cup orange juice

Slice ham into 3-4 oz slices. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; place over medium-high heat until hot. Add ham; cook 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
Add apricot spread and orange juice to skillet, stirring until spread melts. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 to 6 minutes or until ham is glazed.
Garnish with orange slices, if desired.

Crock Pot Beef Stew

Adapted from: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/slow-cooker-beef-stew-i/

PREP: 20 mins
COOK: 12 hrs
READY IN: 12 hrs 20 mins Directions

2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1 inch cubes
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 onion, chopped
3/4 cups beef broth
2 potatoes or turnips, diced
4 carrots, sliced
1 stalk celery, chopped
Place meat in slow cooker. In a small bowl mix together the flour, salt, and pepper; pour over meat, and stir to coat meat with flour mixture. Stir in the garlic, bay leaf, paprika, Worcestershire sauce, onion, beef broth, potatoes, carrots, and celery.
Cover, and cook on Low setting for 10 to 12 hours, or on High setting for 4 to 6 hours.